Galwegians RFC

Towards a century at the heart of Connacht rugby

Author: Admin (page 1 of 4)

Morgan Codyre Q&A

Morgan Codyre at Out Half for Galwegians Firsts

When did you first start playing rugby?

I joined Na Bairneachai for a year when I was 9, then took a break for a few years.

When did you join Galwegians?

I was 13.

Why did you join Wegians?

My uncle, Tim had played here. A lot of my school friends were up here too.

What are you Career Highlights to date?

Winning the Connacht Schools Senior Cup with the Jes in 2016 was pretty special. Getting a couple of caps for the Connacht Eagles while I was in the sub-academy was cool too.

Were you always a 10?

Not always. I was quite small when I was younger, so I played mostly at scrum-half until I was around 16. I haven’t strayed from out-half too often since then.

Your Favourite Player or Role Model You Look Up to?

I couldn’t name one person in particular. A few coaches and teammates have had a big impact on my playing and coaching.

What does your CCRO role involve?

CCRO is Connacht Community Rugby Officer. I’m a support coach for the youth academy, so I’d be in Glenina each evening and at the weekends helping different coaches and age groups. I also work with the underage Connacht squads throughout the year.

What are your career plans?

For now, I have my eyes set on coaching professionally. I’m studying sports science, though, so I’ll probably end up unemployed!

Your goals and ambitions for this season and beyond?

After missing the last year through injury, my main goal is to get back on the pitch and hopefully get a good run of games. If we can consolidate our position in AIL 2B this year, then we can start to build towards climbing back up the divisions over the next few seasons.

Andrew Browne Q&A

Q. Age you started playing rugby?

A. I started with Galwegians’ U8’s, but i didn’t keep it up and stopped playing at the end of the season. I only went back playing rugby when I was in 6thyear in the Bish.

Q. First Year in Wegians Seniors?

A. My first year with the Wegians Seniors was the 2005/06 season, where I played a couple of games towards the end of the season. 

Q. Connacht Career start & end?

A. Played my first game in a pre-season friendly at the start of the 2006/07 season. I finished with Connacht at the end of the 2017/18 season. 

Q. No. of caps?

A. 156

Q. Career Highlights?

A. Definitely winning the Pro12 in 2016! Everything else is a distant second. 

Q. Best Coach Ever Played Under?

A. I played under a number of excellent coaches during my time, including Michael Bradley, Eric Elwood, Dan McFarland and Pat Lam. However, I found Jimmy Duffy (Connacht Forwards Coach) to be the best. 

Q. Best Teammate?

A. Again, I’ve played with a huge amount of excellent players. For sheer presence, toughness and work ethic, it has to be John Muldoon. 

Q. Toughest opponent?

Leone Nakarawa

Q. Greatest Influence on Your Career?

A. My older brother Damian. Not just for my rugby career, but also for the high standards which he sets in general day to day life

Q. Coaching Career to Date …

A. Connacht: Position specific workshops with underage teams. U17 Academy (short term). Galwegians defence coach 2018/19. Galwegians Head coach 2019/20.

Q. Ambitions for Wegians Seniors this Year?

A. Ambitions are to consolidate our position for the year. Having had 4 bad years, it’s about stopping the slide. I think it’s important to be realistic about this. We also need to work with the other teams throughout the club to create a positive and encouraging environment, where people are excited to come in to. 

Q. Personal Career? 

A. Outside of rugby I’m going back to NUIG to do a Masters in Education. Having completed my degree in Economics and Geography a few years ago, I believe this is the right direction for me at this time. Teaching and coaching also compliment each other very well so it will only help develop each aspect. Long term I would like to see myself pursuing coaching at a higher level. Staying involved in the game with Wegians during my time in college will be hugely beneficial.

Update on Oranswell Development

Last Wednesday 24th July we had a very encouraging steady flow of people attending our Information Evening at Glenlo Abbey Hotel to see first-hand the detail in our planning application.

For those of you who were unable to attend last week, the drawings of our Site Plan and new Clubhouse layout are available to view in the “TV” Room at Crowley Park.

The Planning & Development Committee urge all members to take the time to view these plans, and particularly on a Tuesday and Thursday evening from 7pm to 8:15pm, where our senior players continue their pre-season training.

Please see a letter from the Planning & Development Committee and an overview site plan attached below.

New Oranswell facility Information Evening, Wed July 24th

Dear Members

We are at an advanced stage in our planning preparation for our proposed new facility at Oranswell in Galway.

On the 24th July, from 4pm to 7pm at Glenlo Abbey Hotel, we have arranged an Information Evening to give all members the opportunity to view our plans and engage with the professionals appointed to prepare our planning application.

Last evening, 9th July, we visited the residents, door to door, in Oranswell introducing ourselves and listening to any concerns they may have had with our proposed facility.

We used this opportunity to invite them, if they so wished, to also come along to our Information Evening in order to get a better understanding of this project. (see letter below).

The Galwegians Board of Directors would encourage as many of our members as possible to attend this event.

Kind Regards,
Niall Beatty
Director of Development

Youth Academy Awards 2018-19

Galwegians is proud to congratulate the Youth Academy on another fantastic season. Thanks to all the coaches and supporters for their efforts and support. The ethos of rugby is to put the enjoyment and values of the game first, but it is also important to celebrate our achievements so congratulations to our squad award winners and the players who earned representative honours.

Squad Awards

  • U13 Black Boys
    • Most Improved Player: Alex Bleahen
    • Players Player of the Year: Rory Gavin
    • Player of the Year: Dara Counihan
  • U13 Blue Boys
    • Most Improved Player: Colm Marnell
    • Players Player of the Year: Conor Gibbs
    • Player of the Year: Luca Danjou
  • U14 Girls
    • Most Improved Player: Anna Keady
    • Players Player of the Year: Caitlin O’Hara
    • Player of the Year: Rebecca Hastings
  • U14 Boys
    • Most Improved Player: Fionn O’Rourke
    • Players Player of the Year: Jamie Cunningham
    • Player of the Year: Iarla Collins
  • U15 Boys
    • Most Improved Player: Eoghan Harlowe
    • Players Player of the Year: Colin Counihan
    • Player of the Year: Aidan Crowe
  • U16 Girls
    • Most Improved Player: Holly Taylor
    • Players Player of the Year: Sinead Black
    • Player of the Year: Rosa O’Connor
  • U16 Boys
    • Most Improved Player: Jack Kennedy
    • Players Player of the Year: Andrew Sherlock
    • Player of the Year: Kieran Park
  • U17 Boys
    • Most Improved Player: Benjamin Hynes
    • Players Player of the Year: Daragh Kennedy
    • Player of the Year: Tadhg Melville
  • U18 Girls
    • Most Improved Player: Laura Hastings
    • Players Player of the Year: Ruby Lynch
    • Player of the Year: Ellen Greally
  • U18 Boys
    • Most Improved Player: James Reynolds
    • Players Player of the Year: Liam Smyth
    • Player of the Year: Tomas Gillanders

Recognition of Achievements

  • International Cap, U18 Clubs v Italy: Conor O’Shaughnessy
  • Interprovincial U18 Winners: Conor O’Shaughnessy, Jack Power, Edward Skekete
  • Interprovincial Call Up U17: Millar Yule, Garvin Surlis, Edward Shekete, Darragh Kennedy, Joe Agbo, Gary Lally, Zak Rather, Darragh Creighton, Andrew Sherlock
  • Interprovincial Call Up U16: Nicky Pfeiffer, Dylan Keane, Mark O’Connor, Andrew Sherlock, Patrick Nash

Galwegians announce Andrew Browne as Head Coach for 2019/20

Galwegians RFC have just announced the appointment of former Connacht Player Andrew Browne as their new head coach for upcoming 2019/20 season.

Andrew comes with huge experience from his time with Connacht and is being joined by current Connacht player Tiernan O’Halloran, who will take on the role as assistant coach.

Current Strength & Conditioning coach Jarlath Naughton will complete the coaching ticket.

The city based club have gone through a turbulent few years, but are excited at the appointment of the new coaching team and, according to Club President Michael Tarpey, are looking forward to what the future holds “We are delighted to have Andrew on board as our coach, particularly as he was a former player here and has strong family connections with the club. The addition of Tiernan O’Halloran is also a massive coup for us and we really feel that this can be the beginning of a successful period in our club”.

Andrew Browne said, “I am really excited to be taking up this new role as head coach with Galwegians RFC and am relishing the Challenge that the position brings. Galwegians has a proud history and Im looking forward to being part of its future and developing as a coach myself. Joining me will be current Connacht player Tiernan O’Halloran and former Galwegian stalwart Jarlath Naughton, both of whom bring a wealth of knowledge and experience, along with a desire to succeed and bring the club on to the next level.”

Galwegians RFC can also confirm that outgoing Senior Coach Brian McClearn will be taking over the helm with their U20s next season. Sincere thanks to Brian for all his efforts over a very difficult three years and the club is delighted to see him remaining involved in the club. 

This Is Your Club – Galwegians, 1957

Harry Blake Is Still There – After 34 years

Without Harry Blake there would have been be no Galwegians Rugby Club. He helped to start the club 34 years ago – and he’s still with them today.
So Harry Blake was the man I wanted to tell me the story of Galwegians. One bright moring I drive up to the Blake home, a country mansion that look sout over Galway Bay.

Harry was ill. His wife took me to his bedroom and there he was, sitting up in bed and talking rugby with Jack Deacy and Sean Healy.

Talking with them took me back into Galwegians history. They told me how the club was formed, of the early struggles to keep the game alive and of the wonderful progress over the past years.

Courageous

There were three clubs in Connacht in the season 1921-22 – University College Galway, Galway Town, and Sligo – and Galway Town wereon the way out. Out they went the following season.

Harry Blake and a few pals decided that the game must go on in teh city – so they formed Galwegians. It was a corageous decision – and one they never regretted. Today the club has five teams with players ranging from schoolboys to seniors.

The Seniors went on tour to France in November and the Juniors have fixed a tour to the Isle of Man at Easter. It will be financed by the tour fund they have among the players.

After the war, Galwegians made a great effort to boost rugby in teh West. They brought over, at their own expense, the famous Vikings side, but the match was a financial flop.

Undismayed, they have continued to bring over many famous touring sides. And rarely have they had to call on guest players, so rich is the quality of Galway rugby talent.

Galwegians are Connacht Cup holders and they have won it eight times in all. Starting in 1926 they won the Cup four times in a row.

Racing Club de France were greatly impressed by Galwegian playing standards – and their hospitality – when they visited the West. They wanted to repay the Irishmen for a wonderful time.

That’s why Galwegians were in France in November. That’s why the French International trial was cancelled so that a really strong team could be fielded against the boys from Galway.

In recent seasons Galwegians have had eight, nine, ten and even 12 players in the Connacht team.

Connacht fielded three internationalis for the first time against Munster in Cork in October. They were Dickie Roche, Charlie Lydon and Brendan Guerin – all from Galwegians.

Galway folk have another international in their team. Latest to join the elite is Tony O’Sullivan, club captain and one of the best lock forwards in Ireland.

Galwegian players have given the club prominence by their performances on the field and by the quality of their rugby. But we must not forget the backroom boys who have steered the club through difficult times, the men who today are playing their part in the affairs of teh Union, branch and club.

Seen club rise

Harry Blake has been president of Galwegains since 1928. He has seen the club rise from a shaky start 34 years ago to its present status. galway folk will always remember Harry Blake.

They will also remember Henry Anderson, one of Harry Blake’s ablest assistants in the early days. He was Connacht’s first rugby international and their first president of the Irish Rugby Football Union.

The club has given many splendid men to the administrative side of the game. Johnny Glynn is junior vice president of the Union and secretary of Connacht branch. Harry Blake and Chris Crowley are on the committee of teh Union and Chris is treasurer of the branch.

Jack Deacy represents Galwegians on the Connacht branch. Gerry Dodd is secretary of the club, with Jack Fitzgerald as treasurer.

Gerry Dodd helped to make an unusual record for Galwegains last season. He gave his 14 stone odd to the second row of thejunior team and was supported by 22 stone Des Dempsey. A second row of nearly 37 stone … Can you beat that?

U13s in hard fought weekend of rugby

Busy Saturday for Galwegians u13 Last weekend. Blacks kicked off in the first round off the cup in Ballinasloe.

Ballinasloe, who were a relative unknown quantity as they were playing in tje B league, got off to a good start after showing they were not going to be a pushover with a few turnovers and eventually a try following a kick chase. They failed to convert.

The Blacks upped the tempo and out half Dara Counihan set up a nice try after a cross field kick ably received by winger Sean Murphy which Counihan also converted.

Jack Kennedy then crossed the whitewash to make it 12: 5 to Wegians at the break.

Ballinasloe came back strongly after the break and edged closer to Wegians after a try 10:12.

However, a strong last quarter from the Galwegian Blacks including a try from no 8 Ben O’Dwyer which was converted by Dara Counihan left it 10:19 to Wegians at the final whistle.

The Blacks now face local rivals Corinthians on the 9th March in the next round.

The coaching team had to quickly relocate to Castlepark after the Ballinasloe fixture and the blues were facing Buccaneers in their first round match at 3.30pm.

The Blues were very light on numbers for the game with only three substitutes on the bench and 6 players missing.

The Blues put in a very solid performance in the first half with Colm Marnell powering through the Buccaneers defence for a try after several attempts to make it 7 points to Wegians following a John Graddich conversion.

Despite Buccaneers abrasive playing style and a strong wind in their favour it was 7: 5 to wegians at the break.

The light numbers took their toll in the second half, with the forwards putting in a big shift to resist the Buccaneers attacks and Buccs eventually breaking through for a converted try.

The Blues pushed hard in attack and were unlucky with the bounce of the ball following several kicks deep into Buccs half. Despite the gallant effort from the Blues with astounding performances from the entire team, the clock eventually ran out with a final score of 7:12 for Buccs.

The Blues now face Tuam or Ballina in the Plate on the 30th match.

Mickey Heaslip RIP

We are deeply saddened by the news of the passing on Tuesday morning 19th February of former Club Captain and President Michael Heaslip.

A Galwegian to the core, Mickey was something of a legend who gave a lifetime of stellar service to our club both on and off the pitch. He will be sorely missed by his family and many friends.

Funeral arrangements are as follows: Removal Thursday 21st Feb. reposing at An Cillín, Immaculate Mary Queen Church, Barna from 5-7pm. Service Friday 22nd at 11am in Barna.

There will be a guard of honour by club members.

U13s test themselves in Munster

The U13 Blue team travelled to Old crescent on Sunday last with almost a full squad for the first time in a while.

The game kicked off in damp conditions on the main pitch in Old Crescent with a large crowd watching from the clubhouse. A big physical Crescent side gave the blues some trouble at the breakdown initially but the boys found their feet and once the ball hit the wings the pace of full back Paul Sharkey delivered a first try under the posts. This was converted by Callum Elwood back once again in the familiar role of no. 10.

A further period of pressure by Galwegians after the restart with the pack including John Gibbs, Mathew Harty, Sam Guillfoyle, Senan Flynn and Colm Marnell making big gains up the centre. A final big carry by Colm Marnell right under the crescent posts was finished by Conor Gibbs and once again converted by Callum Ellwood.

An extended period of pressure by Crescent despite a solid wegians defence with big tackles by Mossy Fitzgerald, Jamie Connolly and Eanna Mac Mahon eventually resulted in a Crescent try.

After the first of the half time periods and some changes to the wegians side including Will Mahon in the pack and a blood substitution for scrum half Luka Danjou through the introduction of Michael Hussey on the wing and replacement scrum half Padraig Conole moving to no 9 from the wing, Wegians held out an extended period of Crescent pressure with some accurate clearance kicks by the no 10.

One of these was capitalised on by Hussey after a great chase and tackle which resulted in a turnover and an eventual try by Alex Brown who was excelling in the centre. This was converted despite being close to the touchline by young Ellwood.

The Blues including replacement full back Charlie Conneely kept crescent scoreless for the remainder of the third.

With the introduction of Ryan Murphy and Brendan O Gorman on the wing, Cian O Shaughnessy in no 5 along with the reinstatement of Danjou and Sharkey after the final break Galwegians gave a fine display of attacking and defensive rugby despite the strong pressure from the crescent side and only conceded one un converted try in the final third.

A great result against a strong side and a great experience for the entire squad in the run up to the cup first round in late February . Many thanks to our kind hosts who will travel to Glenina to play the Black team in March.

The U13 Black team are up next against Monivea next Sat 9th Feb in the eagerly anticipated final fixture of the U13 League.

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